Remember, He’s Not Michael Jordan Yet
When you’re frustrated that Sam missed a fly ball because he was rummaging in his underpants in the outfield, remind yourself that he’s six. He hasn’t had time to develop the need to crush other children’s dreams beneath his cleats yet. At six, even the ones who go on to be thirteen-year-old Olympic gymnasts are too busy howling along with the Katy Perry songs in their floor routines to figure out what a handspring is.
If your little Stefanie is meandering aimlessly instead of charging after the ball, she’ll use less energy than that overachieving Bryson kid whose dad is always screaming stuff like “Use your wheels!” A lower caloric expenditure means she’ll need to eat less to replenish her strength. And requiring less food means less stress on our already fragile environment and farm production. She’s not lazy; she’s saving the fucking planet.
Reflect On that Red-Faced Screaming
Dad/Mom/Grandpa Four Seats Down
Everyone hates that person. Instead, take all your frustration at Sally’s complete disregard for team effort and cram it deep into your soul where no one can see it. This won’t actually make you more supportive, but you’ll look less like an asshole.
Also, Reflect On Greg, the Dad Who Brings
a Stationary Bike to Train for His Triathlon
On the Sidelines
No, wine at a 2nd-grader’s soccer game is not tacky. And you need something to do with that $40 YETI tumbler your sister-in-law gave you for Christmas anyway. Besides, in your heart, you know that self-medicating with boosters’ Rice Krispies treats cannot hold a candle to the low-grade, Saturday-morning buzz you really want. Listen to your heart.
Build a Support System
Bond with other suffering parents. This is easiest if you share your booze. Try a fine boxed wine placed in a large cooler bag like that massive sack you haul salads in for eating at your desk every day. Get an extra one and cut a hole in the side of the bag. This gives you a clandestine vehicle with easy access to the soul-soothing twisty wine nozzle.
Be Philosophical About It
Your kid’s performance/ abject disinterest/ commitment to bobbing for ice cubes in the water cooler does not reflect on you as a parent. It’s true. No one is judging you because they’re too busy judging themselves and their ridiculous offspring. Maybe your kid is murdering your dream of having a car with less than 200,000 miles on it and sleeping in on just one damn Saturday, but so is your neighbor’s daughter as she watches the planes fly by and eats dandelions.
And hey, let’s be honest: when you played T-ball in first grade, you spent most of your time using your water bottle as a pretend penis.
So, cheers. Who needs to be topped off?